“The preacher guy that yells about everyone going to hell is here again,” is a whisper that circulates around campus whenever Jesse Morrell stands outside to preach every so often.

In his last visit, street evangelist Morrell and several others came to give the gospel message. Many listened, while some stood around to voice their own opinions contrary to what the evangelists shared.

Jesse Morrell, 28, is a non-denominational Christian from Connecticut. The past 10 years Morrell has been travelling, preaching on streets, universities and colleges, bars, club festivals, and anywhere he can get an audience.

Morrell converted from Catholicism to non-denominational Christianity when he was 15.

“At that point I was already selling drugs. I was a convicted felon. I was smoking crack. I was associating with gangs … My life was a mess. I was facing 5 to 10 years in prison for a second felony charge … And I also got my neck slit in a knife fight, and I realized how fragile life was and how I could die, and then I would stand before God.” jesseyelling1

During his prison time, Morrell heard a bold preacher saying that due to sin, all of them were on their way to hell. Morrell never thought that before he was a sinner going to hell.

Later on, in rehab, he read the Bible, said the “Sinner’s Prayer” and became a Christian. By 17, he was street preaching.

“I never took it (Christianity) serious until I heard a preacher make it a matter of heaven and hell, life and death,” Morrell said.

Morrell’s focuses mainly on speaking at college campuses because he said he wants to “stand up and share my world view and to debate it and discuss it with students.”

Tyler Junior College has a strong Christian voice with many ministries involved to serve students and encourage them in their faith.

Mark Jones, the leader of the Baptist Student Ministries (BSM) felt as if the teachings of Morrell caused hurt and confusion to students.

“It (Morrell’s bold ministry) further, to me, affirms our presence on campus. And it should … even though I don’t agree with the way he treats scripture and the way he treats and seems to berate people … encourage us to be more bold in the way we love, and in the way that we serve.”

Ian Wade, a BSM minister from Wednesday night “True Believers” group has stood across from Morrell before and preached simultaneously, but a different message.

“When you look at gospel, the meaning of it means “the good news”, and this guy by name of Jesse, in particular … it (his message) is not good news because good news would be that salvation is free if you want it and accept it, and all you have to do is repent, but he doesn’t give you a change to repent, therefore it’s just condemning.”

Wade’s approach to ministering to students is what he describes as “Spirit-led.”tyler

“When the Holy Spirit leads you to do something, it doesn’t cause chaos.Things are not out of order. God is a god of order, Wade said.“

Wade said that last year he saw a young lady sitting down on the curb near the spot Morrell normally comes to preach. He said God led him to preach the gospel to her. The girl told Wade that there must be something different about him, because she was racist and didn’t like black people, but she didn’t feel that way toward Wade since he came to her in a different manor. Wade explained that the reason this girl accepted him was because the Holy Spirit led him to talk to her.

The Wesley Foundation is also another Christian organization that has a Christian dorm right across from Tyler Junior College.

“It doesn’t do much for our image,” said Reverend Sunny Farley, director of the Wesley Foundation, about Morrell’s controversial style of preaching. “What theworld needs is love, not hatred and all these kind of things.”

Dozens of students have sat or stood in the smoking area at Pirtle and have heard Morrell’s preaching.

Last semester Art Major Stephanie Lindsay was there last Thursday listening to Morrell preach. She said he pointed directly at her and called her a whore.

“I am an Atheist, but I believe everyone has their own rights to their beliefs as long as their not pressing it against anybody … not forcing it down their throat, the way that they (Morrell and the other evangelists) do it. It drives people away from church, and it’s people like that (who) make me not want to go to church, personally.”

Public Relations major Richard Salazar was also there last Thursday listening to what Morrell and the other evangelists were saying.

“Honestly, I didn’t let it affect me. I heard them last semester, so I was just already used to it. I was like, ‘ Oh, whatever, they’re here. They’re back.’ ”

Salazar said that since he knew what true Christianity was all about, he wasn’t affected by their views by any means.

“I feel like their view is just a wrong view of Christianity,” Salazar said.

As for Morrell, his Christian ministry of street preaching is a lifetime commitment.

Only time will tell for listeners of all different views, if what was said was effective in changing their mindset, or, on the contrary, making their current beliefs more concrete than ever.

 

3 COMMENTS

  1. At least this article has actual quotes from me. A lot of times campus papers don’t even care to quote from the preacher they are supposedly writing about and typically only quote hearsay of what he said.

    Though I wonder if the other campus ministries that complained about my open air preaching have ever actually been to one of my open air meetings or if they have simply heard about it from students….

    It is interesting that the Reverend and director of the Wesleyan Foundation says that open air preaching doesn’t help the image of Christianity… I wonder what he would have thought of John Wesley and George Whitefield who were the founders of Methodism…

    I also thought it was funny how the minister for the Baptist Student Ministries said that when God leads you to do something it doesn’t cause chaos. LOL. Has this man ever read about the riots in the book of Acts? Or how the preaching of Jesus Christ resulted in angry mobs that tried to kill him?

    This is a YouTube video of one of our recent outreaches to the TJC campus: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=URcK2QKVFNY

    These are some of the comments that have been made on that video:

    “Seriously, the students were mocking him, threatening him, tempting him, cursing him, persecuting him and more. It sounds like the very thing they did to the Christ. What the students did seemed like what demons would do to a saint.”

    “I haven’t watched the whole thing but these kids are pathetic degenerates whose attempts to overpower the preacher fall pretty flat. Most of them will probably wallow in sin and poverty for the rest of their lives. Jesse handled the situation with poise and patience. What a great man.”

    “Sad part is these kids could walk away at any time, but just look how they get up in his face, cursing and being totally childish. Proof positive people don’t reach maturity even at college age. Fortunately some do, but the majority have little respect for their fellow man.”

    “Great job Jesse! I admire your boldness, & especially your temperance & self-control.”

    “Wow!! The youths are lost…”

    “Great video, Jesse! I watched the whole thing…all the students were listening intently, but there was one, the guy in black who shook your hand, who appeared noticably appreciative…Praise God for what you’re doing for the Kingdom of God! God bless!”

    “Jesse: Your patience is incredible. What a shame that by the time most of these kids actually realize how much you cared about them, it will be too late for them. To think that these kids are the future leaders of America! They act like they have an IQ of about 40. They hate you and mock you, but they’ll stay for over an hour and skip class to hear you. I pray they repent, or this day will bring them greater condemnation.”

    “Well just imagine if some of these young people becomes leaders and police officers in the future. Society will be much worse than it’s today.”

    “Jesse was the one with reason. The one’s who were behaving like wild animals were clearly the students. That part is obvious.”

    “Awesome preaching, as usual, Jesse. You’re as a lamb in a wolf’s den, sir. Very brave for you being there that long. Love the videos.”

    “Couldn’t really hear what was going on the first time, But wow this was awesome.. !!! I pray God’s Holy Spirit fills these kids and leads them to repentance in Jesus Christ Name NoDoubt !”

  2. When “religious leaders” talk about the damage done to Christianity by preaching, it is as if they have NEVER even read the Bible. Paul, the major author of the new testament had this to say:

    1Co 4:9 For I think that God hath set forth us the apostles last, as it were appointed to death: for we are made a spectacle unto the world, and to angels, and to men.
    10 We are fools for Christ’s sake, but ye are wise in Christ; we are weak, but ye are strong; ye are honourable, but we are despised.
    11 Even unto this present hour we both hunger, and thirst, and are naked, and are buffeted, and have no certain dwellingplace;
    12 And labour, working with our own hands: being reviled, we bless; being persecuted, we suffer it:
    13 Being defamed, we intreat: we are made as the filth of the world, and are the offscouring of all things unto this day.
    14 ¶ I write not these things to shame you, but as my beloved sons I warn you.
    15 For though ye have ten thousand instructors in Christ, yet have ye not many fathers: for in Christ Jesus I have begotten you through the gospel.
    16 Wherefore I beseech you, be ye followers of me.

    These “religious leaders” could no more accept Paul’s testimony than they could accept Jesus’ testimony in Paul’s day.

    Jesse mentioned that the result of Jesus’ preaching was tumultuous. He did not mention that there are 27 places in the Bible where Jesus’ audience either tried to kill Him or plotted on how to kill Him. Here is the record:

    https://www.facebook.com/notes/bro-cope/how-many-times-did-they-try-to-kill-jesus/473830179331794

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